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Teddy Bears with bugs and a lawyer’s liability

  Seth Leventhal writes about a very interesting case on his Minnesota Litigator blog today.  A father in a custody dispute gave his daughter a teddy bear with a listening device inserted in it.  The father’s lawyer then used the recordings in the divorce proceedings.  The Court ruled that the father had violated the federal Wiretap [...]

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Bans on hiring smokers spread, but not in Minnesota

  Very interesting article in today’s New York Times about hospitals and other medical businesses adopting policies that prohibit the hiring of smokers in an effort to increase worker productivity, reduce health care costs and encourage healthier living. Even some anti-tobacco groups are uncomfortable with the policies, however.  One professor is quoted in the article as saying: [...]

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NLRB settles Facebook case: no clarity for now

  It looks like the National Labor Relations Board will not weigh in on the use of Facebook in the workplace anytime soon. I wrote here about the Complaint brought by the NLRB against a Connecticut ambulance company that fired an employee after she criticized her supervisor on Facebook.  The NLRB announced yesterday that it [...]

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Don’t try this at home!

  According to the ABA Journal, when a 60-year-old Internal Revenue Service agent advertised a furnished room for rent in his Florida townhome, it came with some unadvertised features.   In additional to the DVD/VCR player, the room also contained a hidden camera pointed at the bed of the young woman who rented the room.  Revenge [...]

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More on posting to Facebook as protected activity

  I previously wrote here about the NLRB’s claim that an employee was unlawfully fired for criticizing his boss on Facebook.  Now, the Wall Street Journal has a very good article discussing that case and others involving social media in the employment context.

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Government’s interests trump privacy rights of federal contractors

The Supreme Court ruled today on the privacy turducken case I first wrote about here.  Not surprisingly, it favors the government’s right to conduct background checks over an individual’s right to privacy. In its decision in National Aeronautics and Space Administration v. Nelson, the Court held that the government has the right to ask reasonable [...]

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Testing for Legal Drugs

  Very interesting article in today’s NY Times about the struggle to find a balance between an employer’s duty to keep its workplaces safe and an employee’s right to privacy in the context of testing employees for the presence of certain prescription.  One company in Tennessee has been sued by three different employees who were [...]

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Social Media in the Courtroom

  My friend Joel Schroeder at Faegre & Benson has written a terrific article on using social media in litigation, as well as some ideas for discovering it in the first place.  It has lots of good lessons for both litigators and their clients.

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How Not To Use Technology to Announce a RIF

  British employer Everything Everywhere has provided employers on both sides of the Atlantic with a great public service: how not to announce a reduction-in-force. It seems the mobile phone company, which was created by the merger of Orange and T-Mobile, had to advise its 16,000 employees whether or not their jobs were safe following [...]

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More on background checks

I wrote about this issue back in September here, and today there is news that several states are considering laws to limit the use of credit reports in hiring. Supporters of such laws say they are necessary because an increasing number of employers are doing credit checks even though there is no proof that bad [...]

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